Building Carrara Terrains Intro

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  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 14,814
    edited December 1969

    The method I used is simple.
    Go to the shaders tab and scroll down to "Terrain > Dartanbeck"
    Drag the dB Forest shader directly onto your object. It has all of the distribution layers in it.

    Then I went to each of the color, highlight and bump maps and cranked the tiling slider all the way up to 30 for both v and h, which simply makes the leaves and details smaller when you're up close, so you probably don't even need to do that.

  • SileneUKSileneUK Posts: 1,550
    edited March 2014

    The method I used is simple.
    Go to the shaders tab and scroll down to "Terrain > Dartanbeck"
    Drag the dB Forest shader directly onto your object. It has all of the distribution layers in it.

    Then I went to each of the color, highlight and bump maps and cranked the tiling slider all the way up to 30 for both v and h, which simply makes the leaves and details smaller when you're up close, so you probably don't even need to do that.

    So for the three forest blocks...you use the same terrain shader? I didn't get the same tier effect, but close? I added another pic to previous post. Back to drawing board!

    :) SileneUK

    ETA: Your EK is under Objects>Nature and if I open one of the three blocks, I see the terrain used has the same name. db distant or db distant 1. I don't have your shader under the main shader tab. I think I might need to reinstall you! ;)

    OK you are reinstalled and I have your correct shaders now under Shaders>Terrain so will get dB Forest in there and report back later this evening.

    Post edited by SileneUK on
  • argus1000argus1000 Posts: 701
    edited December 1969

    Thanks, Dartanbeck, for this lesson in shaders for terrains. I was looking for a way to make terrains more realistic and you nailed it on the head with a multi-channel in the shader channel, and then texture maps. . I've even experimented with putting the bump map in the normal channel. Even more realistic. You can even put the bump map in the displacement channel, but then it takes more time to render.

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 14,814
    edited December 1969

    kashyyyk said:
    Hey Dart,
    I like the Multi Channel Mixer for creating shaders. See image 1.

    I took your Limestone texture (thanks for it by they way.) and placed it in source 1 and then took a snow texture, second image and placed it in source 2.

    Using the blender option, mix the two images using snow setting and get image 3

    I also used this ground texture http://images.kaneva.com/filestore10/5612493/7257048/Forest_floor_texture_002.JPG
    with blender set to elevation and adjusted the height and blend and got the image in the 4th image. If I would have flipped the the two source images it may have looked better. I think if I would have tiled it, it may have looked better too.

    Right. That's a really cool technique, but I must add that, you don't need to have a top-level multi-channel mixer to do this. I say this because I do prefer to use distribution layers, as in the example terrain shaders that come with Carrara. So instead, I propose trying this:

    For any one of the shaders in the list, you may apply a mixer to mix two maps, a map and a color gradient, a map and something else, etc.,

    Simply select the chose channel, like color, and Operations > Mixer will give you a source 1 and source 2 and a blender.

    We may then do exactly as you mention in your post to create the mixture.

    This allows us to then put that shader in one of the distribution layers. In your case, perhaps you'll want that as your Global Shader, which places that shader over the whole object, leaving the other layers to be placed where they are defined. Some of the example shaders' distribution may cover a good portion of the model. In those cases, you might wish to, instead, place that shader in that layer.

    The reason I like these layers so much is that it allows us to add more fine details to the whole thing - like the tiny, dried leaves in my previous example. Or having patches of grass, rather than having the grass running down the sides of sheer cliff faces, etc.,

    Further, that snowy map that you have can also be used to create texture magic. Since the snowy portions are white, you may use add, multiply, subtract, or other operations to change to white into a color or colors controlled by a color gradient. Very cool image map for that.

    Thanks for the input. Very cool little chunk of terrain you have created there, and I love the forest floor image map.

  • SileneUKSileneUK Posts: 1,550
    edited March 2014

    HI Dart, Am still working.... have discovered that messing with the noise/shuffle on blender gives different effects. And I am working with the ground terrain as well. So much to discover and practice!

    It's been a busy day with real life stuff -- doc appts tomorrow and Friday, so will practice in between. The only bummer about getting my back fixed is that I won't be so confined to the couch and won't have this much time to devote to learning all these new Carrara tools. So I need to make the most of the time ahead of surgery to get these techniques sorted! Thank you, and the others here who have been helping me, for the guidance and patience!

    xx :) SileneUK

    Post edited by SileneUK on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 14,814
    edited December 1969

    Yeah, I'm already messing around with ideas on how I can stand and move around as I work, instead of having to sit behind my screen. The more I get used to using my Wacom tablet, the closer I may come to that as a reality - though doubtful to any large extent.

    Going from lifting, laying, cutting, and leveling heavy stones all day, every day, to sitting is not easy. My back is worse in the sitting position than it is when I'm carrying a 200# + stone in my hands! :ahhh:

    So we just have to take things in strides.

    Work behind the screen - get up and take the dog for a walk and throw some heavy stone around for a while - then get back behind the screen. I probably already mentioned this a million and three times, but I like to watch Carrara video tutorials at TV time, when the day is done, and I'm kicking back. The problem with that is that I am often inspired to get back out of bed and go back to work in Carrara! Ahh, the life!

  • SileneUKSileneUK Posts: 1,550
    edited December 1969

    Yeah, I'm already messing around with ideas on how I can stand and move around as I work, instead of having to sit behind my screen. The more I get used to using my Wacom tablet, the closer I may come to that as a reality - though doubtful to any large extent.

    Going from lifting, laying, cutting, and leveling heavy stones all day, every day, to sitting is not easy. My back is worse in the sitting position than it is when I'm carrying a 200# + stone in my hands! :ahhh:

    So we just have to take things in strides.

    Work behind the screen - get up and take the dog for a walk and throw some heavy stone around for a while - then get back behind the screen. I probably already mentioned this a million and three times, but I like to watch Carrara video tutorials at TV time, when the day is done, and I'm kicking back. The problem with that is that I am often inspired to get back out of bed and go back to work in Carrara! Ahh, the life!

    Don't mess with your back! The docs who see my MRI say I have the spine of a younger woman, so why did this happen? Probably too much DIY. I was hanging out of an upper floor window in our building fixing the seal around where the window frame meets the stone block. Not picking up anything heavy, just being a contortionist with a caulking gun because we do not have a ladder that is 6 stories high.

    I do work with computers for a living as well and it does bugger up backs, necks, arms...you name it, so am going to rearrange what I thought was an ergonomic work station even further when I can leave the couch setup which is actually very easy on the arms and neck.

    Wacom? What size? Do you mean the drawing tablet or are they making a computer tablet now? Haven't viewed any new products in the last year, been too busy.

    Mind that back..you only get one!

    xx :) Silene

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 14,814
    edited December 1969

    I just have a little one, the older Graphire III.
    It's the sitting that's getting your back.
    My Doctors told me that getting away from my manual labor will be a hard adjustment for my back to take. The constant exercise, and careful posture while lifting heavy objects is what has been keeping it strong and healthy.

    In joining the Dogwaffle community, I've heard some of the Professional artists complaint that they bought a tablet that was too large, as it made their movements have to go much further than what they were used to. That would be different, I'd imaging, if the large tab was a Cintiq tablet monitor!

    The hardest part for me to get used to is holding the stylus properly. I never seem to have my fingertips near the buttons - in the middle - but closer to the point of the pencil, like the way I've drawn and painted my whole life. While a left-click can easily be accomplished with the tap of the tip, a right-click requires that I click the rear end of the rocker button. It's really, really nice. And while I'm using it in Howler, it really feels like I'm using a 5H pencil or a brush with a glob of oil paint on it. I love that! I just have to use it more often, I'm told, and then it will become second nature. Philip Staiger of Dogwaffle says that using a graphics tablet can also help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome!

  • SileneUKSileneUK Posts: 1,550
    edited March 2014

    I just have a little one, the older Graphire III.
    It's the sitting that's getting your back.
    My Doctors told me that getting away from my manual labor will be a hard adjustment for my back to take. The constant exercise, and careful posture while lifting heavy objects is what has been keeping it strong and healthy.

    In joining the Dogwaffle community, I've heard some of the Professional artists complaint that they bought a tablet that was too large, as it made their movements have to go much further than what they were used to. That would be different, I'd imaging, if the large tab was a Cintiq tablet monitor!

    The hardest part for me to get used to is holding the stylus properly. I never seem to have my fingertips near the buttons - in the middle - but closer to the point of the pencil, like the way I've drawn and painted my whole life. While a left-click can easily be accomplished with the tap of the tip, a right-click requires that I click the rear end of the rocker button. It's really, really nice. And while I'm using it in Howler, it really feels like I'm using a 5H pencil or a brush with a glob of oil paint on it. I love that! I just have to use it more often, I'm told, and then it will become second nature. Philip Staiger of Dogwaffle says that using a graphics tablet can also help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome!

    I have an A5 Wacom (half a letter size sheet) I got in 2008 and used it for 2D Illustrator drawing. But to be honest....I later found my trackball just as easy as I cam hold down one of the the middle buttons I can designate and roll my thumb around for vector drawing. Helped with carpal tunnel like problems as well. For the Wacom, it was keeping my eye on the screen whilst trying to watch where they stylus was going that was difficult. Maybe now I should give it another go when I get back to a workstation that is not an overbed table for a desktop!

    Thanks for the info. Appreciated!

    xx SileneUK

    Post edited by SileneUK on
  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 14,814
    edited December 1969

    Okay, so maybe I'm not going crazy.
    I recall my Wacom being much more difficult for navigation when I was running WinXP Pro. Perhaps it's that I'm on Windows & now that made the thing seem easier than before? Not sure.
    Now I find it really easy to see the cursor before I stamp down. I'm still scared to try a trackball :)

  • d-j-od-j-o Posts: 344
    edited December 1969

    Right. That's a really cool technique, but I must add that, you don't need to have a top-level multi-channel mixer to do this. I say this because I do prefer to use distribution layers, as in the example terrain shaders that come with Carrara. So instead, I propose trying this:

    For any one of the shaders in the list, you may apply a mixer to mix two maps, a map and a color gradient, a map and something else, etc.,

    Simply select the chose channel, like color, and Operations > Mixer will give you a source 1 and source 2 and a blender.

    We may then do exactly as you mention in your post to create the mixture.

    This allows us to then put that shader in one of the distribution layers. In your case, perhaps you'll want that as your Global Shader, which places that shader over the whole object, leaving the other layers to be placed where they are defined. Some of the example shaders' distribution may cover a good portion of the model. In those cases, you might wish to, instead, place that shader in that layer.

    The reason I like these layers so much is that it allows us to add more fine details to the whole thing - like the tiny, dried leaves in my previous example. Or having patches of grass, rather than having the grass running down the sides of sheer cliff faces, etc.,

    Further, that snowy map that you have can also be used to create texture magic. Since the snowy portions are white, you may use add, multiply, subtract, or other operations to change to white into a color or colors controlled by a color gradient. Very cool image map for that.

    Thanks for the input. Very cool little chunk of terrain you have created there, and I love the forest floor image map.

    OK, cool you can nestle mixers in mixers where my way you can only do the top shader complex once, (but can mix within that though).

    My gallery image here https://www.daz3d.com/gallery/#images/22604 uses your woodlands terrain shader on my terrain and it works great, but I was working on the Iron Fort part with blending in a rust image, I ended up rendering far away and I ended up not needed the close up details, but this works for Objects and terrians so I thought I would share.

    Image one is the complex shader with cellular blend. second image is the render of it.

    Now the third render is your mixer settings and the same results! Now the last image is the Mixer within the mixer, which I left as caution to dramatically show the difference with in the mixer, plus it has some rust within it.

    I can see using it this way for terrain, with different blend modes like slope and elevation all in one shader mixers with in mixer to create some real unique looks. Like your shader uses distribution to define different slopes, I image you could add the mixer within each one of those to create even more details or looks.

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  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 9,018
    edited December 1969

    You can get as complicated as your heart desires! This is the shader for the dam in my Fantasy Village Terrain that I have in my ShareCG account.

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  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 9,957
    edited December 1969

    Here is a bit of silliness I put together to illustrate use of the terrain map importer and layers in the shading tree. I used photoshop to make a heightmap of a stratified property with rows of small buildings. I then used the 3D paint tool to paint the areas that intended to replicate grass and flowers. I then used a multi-layer shader to divide up the terrain model. I used a combination of elevation functions and slope functions to assign the opacity masks for the layers, with one layer being driven by the map that I painted with the 3D paint tool. I assigned a terrain shader and a surface replicator to the area that I painted. I assigned, bricks, marble, and stone to the other areas.

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  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 9,957
    edited December 1969

    And here is the layers list. You can see that the opacity masks vary. One is based on elevation - it covers the marble pylons rising from the top level. One is based on slope - it covers the vertical edges of the rising layers. One is a texture map - it was created with the 3D paint brush and is the terrain shader and the controls the surface replicator.

    Not stunning, but an illustration of another option.

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  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 9,957
    edited December 1969

    Just to make sure I don't mislead anyone, the multi-colored image in the first post is just an illustration of the different layers created by the opacity masks. It is not what I painted with the 3D tool. This is what I painted with the 3D paint tool.

    Note - I got some strange errors in saving the 3D paint image out. I had to save it as a gif, open it in another program and save it as jpeg. I was getting an error message trying to open it. Not sure why.

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  • d-j-od-j-o Posts: 344
    edited December 1969

    These examples are awesome. You know the term KISS, but I'm now wondering what is the most craziest shader you have created for some effect you where going for?

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 9,018
    edited December 1969

    If my scene is approved, then you can see some fairly complex shaders. The one for the campfire is pretty wild.

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  • DiomedeDiomede Posts: 9,957
    edited December 1969

    If my scene is approved, then you can see some fairly complex shaders. The one for the campfire is pretty wild.

    Looks fantastic. I am salivating. Hope it gets approved soon.

  • MysticWingsMysticWings Posts: 226
    edited December 1969

    You really got me in the mood for trying to do this :P
    But one step at a time that I am learning to many things at the same time and Carrara just for one or two weeks.
    Will keep this post in my favorites so that I can do this as soon as possible!

    Happy to see that carrara community is so active! :)

  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 9,018
    edited December 1969

    Happy to see that carrara community is so active! :)

    She don't know us too well, do she? ;-)

  • MysticWingsMysticWings Posts: 226
    edited December 1969

    I don't... yet... ;) But I'm here to stay!! So we will have time! :)

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 14,814
    edited December 1969

    You really got me in the mood for trying to do this :P
    But one step at a time that I am learning to many things at the same time and Carrara just for one or two weeks.
    Will keep this post in my favorites so that I can do this as soon as possible!

    Happy to see that carrara community is so active! :)

    The really cool thing about Carrara is that you get to use it for what you bought it for right away. But as the years pass, you find that it does infinite other things that you decide to do later.

    Yeah, take it nice and easy and have loads of fun.
    This is a nice, active community. We have our quite times - and even those have something going on.
    Glad to have you on board! :)

  • SileneUKSileneUK Posts: 1,550
    edited December 1969

    You really got me in the mood for trying to do this :P
    But one step at a time that I am learning to many things at the same time and Carrara just for one or two weeks.
    Will keep this post in my favorites so that I can do this as soon as possible!

    Happy to see that carrara community is so active! :)

    The really cool thing about Carrara is that you get to use it for what you bought it for right away. But as the years pass, you find that it does infinite other things that you decide to do later.

    Yeah, take it nice and easy and have loads of fun.
    This is a nice, active community. We have our quite times - and even those have something going on.
    Glad to have you on board! :)

    Hi Tania....glad to see another Carrara noob jumping in the deep end too! My background is 2D business illustration/graphics. This is a completely new direction for me. I have some specific interests I want to illustrate and find this such a demanding challenge, but once you get going, sometimes things can come by intuitive experimenting... but most others required RTFM...which is a bit user unfriendly sometimes.
    Bottom line... The 3D artists here are so helpful and their knowledge would span millennia. The best part is they are fun and very tolerant and don't talk down to anyone (that I've found anyways).

    Good luck... it's a great way and place to learn Carrara.

    :) SileneUK

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 14,814
    edited December 1969

    laurenwbr said:
    The best part is they are fun and very tolerant and don't talk down to anyone (that I've found anyways).

    Good luck... it's a great way and place to learn Carrara.

    :) SileneUK

    Awww...
    We are fun, aren't we! Now if only I could figure what this button does.................
  • MysticWingsMysticWings Posts: 226
    edited December 1969

    Thank you all!! Feel very welcomed here!! :)

    Dartan - I really have to go ease since my path in 3d is really short. I actually just start really learning 2 months ago (I started playing a little with daz in October but it was just playing with the characters as they were and know the software, not really diving into 3d)... and sometimes I just can't believe all I've learned in this short time... but there's much more to learn... The funniest part is that I go by the path my projects send me, and creating landscapes and natural scenes can help a lot in my book illustrations!! But daz is not very good at it. When I bought carrara it was for modeling, since hexagon don't work in my mac and carrara was in a mega sale!! When I opened it and saw that it work with landscapes... I really had to control me to keep on modeling learning instead of jumping directly to landscapes :) But I will have time for everything, and I have lots of will to learn and create :)

    laurenwbr - My path is quite different... I studied photography/video in secondary school, than 2 years in architecture, than changed to sculpture, and after finishing the degree I spent 2 years dedicating to writing and drawing and 1 and an half year working hard (barely dedicating to arts) so I could buy a computer that would allow me to finally go deep in 3d. And now I'm here!!!! And very happy, finding that all I did in the past made me have knowledge that is proven to be very useful in 3d world!!

    I really laugh a lot with your signature!! Actually I look very much like my avatar even that it was not intended that way... :P But I also feel more young now than some years ago!!

    Nice to know you all and we keep in touch here!!

  • DartanbeckDartanbeck Posts: 14,814
    edited December 1969

    I almost never have that serious look on my face, but it's pretty close, I guess. Here's me 34 years ago, at the tender age of 14 - the first year I started making money in bars as a drummer. I still play, but Bernie, the sweet Collie on my lap, is long gone.

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  • SileneUKSileneUK Posts: 1,550
    edited March 2014

    I almost never have that serious look on my face, but it's pretty close, I guess. Here's me 34 years ago, at the tender age of 14 - the first year I started making money in bars as a drummer. I still play, but Bernie, the sweet Collie on my lap, is long gone.

    I could still be yo momma! ;) SileneUK

    ETA...bet the girls were chasing you like Justin Bieber but as one who was actually a musician!

    Post edited by SileneUK on
  • evilproducerevilproducer Posts: 9,018
    edited December 1969

    I almost never have that serious look on my face, but it's pretty close, I guess. Here's me 34 years ago, at the tender age of 14 - the first year I started making money in bars as a drummer. I still play, but Bernie, the sweet Collie on my lap, is long gone.

    Holy Peter Brady! Dart- with hair! I looked like a chubby version of the guy in The Blue Lagoon. :lol:

  • MysticWingsMysticWings Posts: 226
    edited December 1969

    I almost never have that serious look on my face, but it's pretty close, I guess. Here's me 34 years ago, at the tender age of 14 - the first year I started making money in bars as a drummer. I still play, but Bernie, the sweet Collie on my lap, is long gone.

    It actually looks similar... except for the expression :P And is always nice to see that I am not the only one who allow big dogs on their lap!!!

  • VengedVenged Posts: 0
    edited December 1969

    Does anyone know if Carrara can export the terrain as a height map? I want to use the Carrara terrain in Unreal engine 4.

    Thanks

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